Chief executives of nonprofit organizations gave their boards grades of D+ in fund raising and C+ in increasing board diversity, according to a national survey whose results were released on Wednesday.
The 2010 Nonprofit Governance Index, unveiled at the annual BoardSource Leadership Forum, in San Francisco, also shows many organizations are still struggling to recover from the recession: Forty-one percent cut or froze staff salaries, 29 percent laid off staff members, and 28 percent dipped into their reserves or endowments.
The survey of 978 nonprofit CEO’s and 780 board members also revealed dissatisfaction about diversity levels in organizations. It showed just 28 percent of chief executives surveyed reported that they were satisfied with the degree of ethnic diversity on their boards. More than 70 percent said they believe racial or ethnic diversity adds value to their organization’s mission.
The survey respondents—executives and trustees alike—agreed that fund raising was the area of board governance most in need of improvement.
The survey is the sixth since 1994 produced by BoardSource, an organization in Washington that focuses on improving nonprofit boards. The group will make the survey results available free on its Web site later this month.